(TCR) - True Christian Religion: Containing the Whole Theology of the New Church Predicted by the Lord in Daniel 7:13-14 and Revelation 21:1-2

TCR 735

Remove Highlights | Highlight Search Terms


735. After this the angel addressed those who had adopted the idea that the joys of heaven and eternal happiness are feastings with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, followed by games and spectacles, and then feasting again, and so on to eternity. And he said to them, "Follow me, and I will introduce you into the felicities of your joys." And he led them through a meadow to a plain staked out, and on it tables were placed, fifteen on each side.
They asked why there were so many tables; the angel replied, "The first table is Abraham's, the second Isaac's, the third Jacob's and near them in order are the tables of the twelve apostles; on the other side is the same number of tables for their wives; the three first being for Sarah, Abraham's wife, Rebecca, Isaac's wife, and Leah and Rachel, Jacob's wives; the twelve remaining tables are for the wives of the twelve apostles."
[2] After a little delay, all the tables were seen to be loaded with dishes, and the spaces between decorated with little pyramids of sweetmeats. The guests stood around the tables waiting to see those who were to preside. These, after a little waiting, appeared, entering in order of procession from Abraham to the last of the apostles; and each going at once to his own table, took his place upon a couch at the head of it. Then they said to those standing around, "Sit you down with us." And the men sat down with those fathers, and the women with their wives, and ate and drank in gladness and with reverence.
After the meal the fathers went out; and then sports were introduced, dances by maidens and young men, and afterward spectacles; and when these were ended the guests were again invited to the feasting, but with the understanding that on the first day they should eat with Abraham, on the second with Isaac, on the third with Jacob, on the fourth with Peter, on the fifth with James, on the sixth with John, on the seventh with Paul, and with all the rest in order until the fifteenth day, when they were to renew the feasting again in the same order; changing seats; and so on to eternity.
[3] After this the angel called together the men of his company and said to them, "All those whom you see at the tables had the same imaginary thought about the joys of heaven and its eternal happiness that you had; and these feasting scenes were instituted and permitted by the Lord in order that they might see the vanity of their ideas and be led away from them. Those chief men whom you saw at the head of the tables merely impersonated old men; most of them are rustics with beards, and puffed up by some little wealth, upon whom has been induced the fantasy that they actually were those ancient fathers. But follow me to the ways of exit from this camp."
[4] They followed him; and they saw fifty here and fifty there who had loaded their stomachs with food until they were nauseated, and longed to return to the familiar scenes of their own homes, some to their offices, some to their business, and some to their trades. But many were detained by the keepers of the grove, and were asked how many days they had feasted, and whether they had yet eaten at the tables with Peter and Paul, and were told that it would be shameful for them to go away before doing so, because it would be unbecoming. But most of them answered, "We are surfeited with our joys, the food has become insipid to us, our taste has dried up, our stomachs loathe these things, we cannot bear these drinks, we have spent several days and nights in this luxury, and we earnestly beg to be let out." And being let out, with panting breath and hurried steps they fled home.
[5] Then the angel called the men of his company, and on the way taught them about heaven, as follows: "In heaven, just as in the world, there are food and drink, feasts and convivial parties, on the tables of the great are the choicest foods, rarities, and delicacies, whereby their spirits are exhilarated and refreshed; there are also plays and exhibitions, and instrumental and vocal music; and all in the highest perfection. Moreover, such things are joys to those in heaven, but not happiness; happiness must be in the joys, and thus from them. It is happiness in the joys that causes them to be joys, enriches them, and so sustains them as to prevent their becoming paltry and wearisome; and this happiness every man has from use in his employment.
[6] "In the affection of every angel's will there is a kind of hidden current that draws his mind to the doing of something, wherein the mind finds tranquillity and satisfaction; and this satisfaction and tranquillity produce a state of mind receptive of the love of use from the Lord; and from the reception of this love comes heavenly happiness, which is the life of those joys that have been enumerated. Heavenly food in its essence is no other than love, wisdom, and use together; that is, use from love through wisdom; and because of this to everyone in heaven food for the body is given according to the use he performs, most excellent food to those who are eminently useful; food of medium quality but of exquisite taste to those whose use is of the middle grade; inferior food to those who perform low uses; but none to the indolent."


User-Contributed Related Pages

Be the First to Find a Related Page!

Add a Related Page

Translate This Page

Add Small Canon Search to Your Website

Add a Small Canon Search™ button to my Google Toolbar

Add Small Canon Search™ to my Firefox Search Bar!

Add to Google

Daily Bible Verse

Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner

Green Hosting

5 FREE Domains with Select Hosting Plans. Get yours!